Apii Te Uki Ou celebrated its 30th birthday yesterday during a special assembly with the attendance of founding members including Jessie Sword, Tere and Mike Carr, Karen Harvey and former staff and students. MELINA ETCHES/23052624
Apii Te Uki Ou started its journey in 1993 with one teacher, Kathy Nooroa and 15 students, using the LDS hall in Avatiu as their classroom.
Today the school has a roll of 255 students and 33
staff including teachers.
Founding member Jessie Sword was “humbled and proud”
to address the school on behalf of the many parents and sponsors who have
helped make the school what it is today.
“We all had a dream.
“I think a lot of people in government thought we were
crazy, but we had a dream and the more they said we couldn’t do it that made us
more determined to get out there and make it happen.”
Sword acknowledged the longest serving teacher,
Saireni Poila for her 23 years of service to the school, and the late Lionel
Brown and Eric Ponia who steered the Ministry of Education 30 years ago.
School principal Carly Ave thanked the teachers,
parents and students as well as former board members and founders for attending
the special occasion yesterday.